Comments: December 7
We were both. My dad was born in 1930, in Saginaw. His dad was a dentist. Grandpa pulled teeth for farmers that were kicked by mules. The city used the clinkers and ash from home coal furnaces and stoves to provide traction on icy roads. A neighbor had a very extensive garden for actual food, not SWPL food. And Saginaw was a manufacturing city, machined goods came from there. Down the street from time to time came prefab superstructures of destroyer-escorts, going to Bay City. And in high school some of the students from outlying farm communities had German accents and their parents were born in the US.
We were big then, we are big now. As - I think - Whitman said "we are contradictions" and in our bigness we had room for everything my dad saw, and everything his dad saw, and everything I see. All contradictions spread out everywhere and over everything. A combination of tradition and place and fluidity, home and frontier, that is the USA.*
*If I may say, Elizabethean England was in the same place when it produced Shakespeare and Drake, it was full of tradition and change, a lot of danger and a lot of opportunity. Old societal settlements (like now) were being removed and people were moving to set the new settlement to their liking (like now).**
**I think I once said that the post WWII settlement of Powers is now dead and that we are back into Kipling's World. Domestically, in the USA, the post WWII, post Great Depression settlement is also done. The various domestic power groups are searching for their allies, and the smart ones are looking for new allies rather than mining the last bit of power from old groupings. The society of 1940 in its bones was not that of 1920, and that of 2030 will not, in its bones resemble that of today.
Posted by Mikey NTH at December 8, 2012 5:56 PM